Admiral: Submarine Force Shifting To Payload-Centric Model
By Julia Bergman
New London Day
June 1, 2016
Groton — The submarine force is shifting from a platform-centric model to a payload-centric model, Rear Adm. Jeffrey Trussler told a small crowd Wednesday night at the University of Connecticut's Avery Point campus.
"We have some very good weapons in our little Swiss knife but we're still very limited," Trussler said.
Trussler is the commander of the Undersea Warfighting Development Center, which began operating Sept. 1, 2015, in Groton as part of a larger Navy plan to establish warfighting development centers for air, undersea, surface and expeditionary forces.
The command is responsible for training the submarine force in advanced tactics, techniques and procedures for anti-submarine warfare.
His talk Wednesday, "The Future of the Submarine Force and Submarine Warfare," was part of Connecticut's Submarine Century lecture series.
At any given time, the U.S. can have five to 10 submarines around the world, Trussler said, and "their job is just to help us listen, walk that potential future battle space to give us forewarning of adversary activities."
"We're the one part of the force that's kind of doing today what it might do, should an actual conflict arise," he continued. "We may already be there and we may already have experience in the area, know what the order of battle is in the area and understand the environment very well."
Trussler described the evolution of the submarine force, which he considers to be in its fourth generation, as the "leading edge of a lot of great work that's going to be happening over the next 10, 20, 30 years."
He detailed some of the work being done to extend the reach of the Navy's submarine fleet.
The submarine force is going to double, triple, quadruple "or even more" how far its torpedoes can go, Trussler said.
"We're going to have the ability to launch and recover unmanned undersea vehicles," he said.
He indicated the possibility of building those so-called UUVs, that can operate for 10, 20 or 30 days by themselves, or that can drop sensors and come back and query them later.
Maybe in the future when launching an unmanned aerial vehicle from a submarine, the UAV will be able to fly for eight or nine hours and feed visual and other information back to a submarine, he said.
"That's the type of work, experimentation and the research and actual testing that's going on right now to grow longer arms," Trussler said.
"That submarine that can get in and go farther and penetrate farther right now than most other of our military units," he said. "We're going to make those arms longer and we're going to make them more lethal with the technology we're working on right now."